Iowa Congressman Steve King praised right-wing Dutch politician Geert Wilders, saying that the white nationalist politician's policies to "de-Islamise" the Netherlands are spot on.
Wilders "understands that culture and demographics are our destiny. We can't restore our civilization with somebody else's babies," King wrote on Twitter late on Sunday 12 March. King's tweet came as the Dutch prepare to decide whether or not they should vote for Wilders in a national election on Wednesday.
Rep. Steve King fact file
- Date of birth: 28 May 1949
- Place of birth: Storm Lake, Iowa
- Education: King attended attended Northwest Missouri State University but did not graduate
- Career: In 1975 King founded an earth moving company and was later elected Iowa State Senator in 1997. King was first elected to Congress in 2002
- Family: A devout Catholic, King is married and has three children
Wilders has campaigned on promises to "de-lsamise" the Netherlands, closing mosques, banning Muslim immigration, and outlawing Islam's holy book the Koran. Wilders was convicted in December of inciting discrimination for a rabble-rousing speech against the Moroccan population, which he has said includes "a lot of Moroccan scum." He founded the Party of Freedom in 2002.
King defended his tweet early Monday morning in an interview on CNN. "I meant exactly what I said," he said. "It's a clear message that we need to get our birth rates up or Europe will be entirely transformed within a half-century or a little more and Geert Wilders knows that."
King added that he would "like to see an America that's just so homogenous that we look a lot the same."
Has Rep. Steve King ever made comments like this before?
King has been a House Representative for Iowa since 2002, and is known for making controversial statements. During a discussion on MSNBC in July 2016 about whether more American minority groups should be represented in the Republican Party, King wondered aloud whether people from other cultures other than the West had made any contributions to human civilization.
"As you to go back through history and figure out where where are these contributions that have been made by these other categories of people that you're talking about. Where did any other subgroup of people contribute more to civilization?" King asked.
As an Iowa state senator King proposed the failed "God and Country Bill." It planned ending school curriculums in Iowa that taught multi-cultural, non-sexist outlooks, and free market policies.
King is among conservatives who have strongly advocated an end to the US practice of granting automatic citizenship to children born there to parents who are in the country illegally.
What other right-wingers has Rep. King supported?
In October 2016 Rep. King became the first American elected official to meet with French far-right presidential candidate Marine Le Pen, the head of France's National Front. Le Pen shares many of the same values as Wilders.
When Le Pen visited the US in early January 2017, she visited Trump Tower where she partied with right-leaning political operative with ties to Trump's team and far-right leaders in Europe. In a tweet capturing a second meeting between Le Pen and King, when he travelled to Paris in February, he wrote that they were discussing "shared values".